Regular readers of this blog will know of my history complaining about Tesco, taking the giant to court and meeting the new CEO etc. See here for all the links to Tesco posts
When I met some of the team in late November I met Helen Wilson who is Head of Quality Evaluation at Tesco. I asked her to write me a guest post on how Tesco test products and how YOU can join in. I’ve just signed up! I’m waiting to hear if they accept me, there will be trouble if they don’t!
Putting the finest* products on your plate (and around your house!)
As a business that serves millions of people across the world every week, we have a huge responsibility to make sure our food is of the highest quality and at a great price.
I’m one of around 75 people who work in Tesco’s Quality Evaluation Team, and it’s our task to make sure that all of our food and drink is properly tested and scrutinised. The team comes from a wide range of backgrounds, including economists, scientists and chemists. I graduated with a degree in Chemistry 20 years ago and initially specialised in the development of Health & Beauty products before moving into the world of consumer testing nearly ten years ago.
We’re all passionate about food and there’s nothing more rewarding than seeing a product we’ve tested and improved sitting on our shelves. We take a huge interest in the products we sell and we’re always on the lookout for products that we could improve for customers, even when cooking our dinner or driving the kids to school.
We all really enjoyed showing The Complaining Cow around one of our testing facilities last month and both Helen and I thought that you might like to know more about how customers can share feedback with us and get involved in our testing process.
Each week, we invite customers into our four Product Assessment Centres across the UK to take part in product testing. These testers don’t need any special qualifications; all we ask is that they don’t have any food based allergies, are not pregnant or on antibiotics and that they haven’t taken part in another panel in the past two weeks. There are four of these across the country, in Perth, Camberley, Cheshunt and Shoreham.
We also have a specially trained customer panel which works in our Hertfordshire HQ at Cheshunt; (picture of this group meeting below). These testers are hand-picked for their excellent sense of smell and taste and their passion for food and drink. Their role is to give feedback on our new product ranges, helping us to fine-tune our products so that we can make sure that every mouthful strikes the right balance of flavours.
One area where we are currently looking for customers to get involved is by joining our group of online testers, working from the comfort of your own home. As a tester, we will invite you to take part in testing products which you regularly buy. These positions are open to anyone – as long as you’re over 18, have a Clubcard and live in the UK. To apply to join the panel click here.
These customers, as well as our rigorous world-leading testing programme for Household, Petcare, Clothing and Health & Beauty products, help us to make sure that everything you buy from Tesco lives up to the standards we, and you, rightfully expect. For more details on some of our favourite food products, take a look at our Real Food website